This Sunday is the last Sunday in the season of Epiphany. That means among other things that many of us will be singing lots of alleluias, because the word “alleluia” is one of those things that we give up for Lent.
In addition, this last Sunday in Epiphany is always the feast of the Transfiguration where we celebrate the time when Jesus positively glowed for a few of his disciples.
Transfiguration is a moment when we know God’s presence, not because we see God directly, but because we see the world around us, ordinary things, in extraordinary light. Think of Moses on a mountain before a “shrubbery” alight with flames that don’t burn. Or think of Jesus on the mountain aglow with inexplicable light. Matthew probably had Moses in mind when he sketched Jesus in those terms (Matthew ALWAYS had Moses in mind).
This is how we see God in this life – by seeing the world around us, and the people around us, alight with the love of God. Have you ever had a moment where you saw somebody familiar as if for the first time? Have you ever had a moment when somebody was being particularly annoying, and it dawned on you that they are just as delightful to God as you are, though still annoying. That’s a less dramatic form of Transfiguration. When it happens, be sure to celebrate.